But here’s the thing: I have sensitive senses. i.e. I hear more than most people, I have a great sniffer (I can always tell what perfume people are wearing), and my emo sensor is set to ultra-high. My eyes, however, they age.
A friend [recently] told me she thinks her 10-year-old daughter is “too sensitive.” And I was all “Whoa, careful. You don’t want her to hide her creative light.” The mom said, “I just want to protect her.” which I suppose I understand…
I just try to make my son aware of his sensitivity and to guide him to when he might want to corral his feelings for his own comfort. The point is, teach your children not to be afraid of their emotions. Teach your children to name their emotions.
Teach your children to identify which emotions don’t serve them. Like anger. I always say “Anger is normal, but we have to try to control it, to not give into it.” I always say that after SCREAMING MY HEAD OFF AT HIM.
Sensitivity can absolutely protect you, too, by being hyper-aware of your surroundings. But that can quickly shift into paranoia, fear, anxiety. Like, despite all the flying I do I’m always anxious about it. And since being in a minor fender bender accident, now we can add driving/ being in a car/ taxi to that mix. I’m constantly telling taxis to slow the hell down, which isn’t very New York of me.
Ohhh, that kind of anxiety is because you think if you controlled the world you would be safe. Life beat that bullshit opinion out of me really young. I can’t control jack shit, except for suppressing my negative feelings. And in that I SCORE A THOUSAND MILLION. And so I pay a therapist.
Did you read Kat Kinsman’s amazing piece on CNN about her struggles with anxiety?
Nope, but will immediately after this session, ’cause I need more ideas to help my son carry his sensitivity. I don’t have anxiety at all. I can basically put my hand on a hot stove, smell my flesh burning, and go, “Mmm, what’s for dinner?”
I find it very strange, I’m extremely sensitive to other people’s anxiety, pain, emotions, but I trained myself to move away from my own. Because I don’t like THE VULNERABILITY.